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Create A Yoga Retreat At Home

Create A Yoga Retreat At Home

Do the words ‘yoga ashram’ conjure up an image of emaciated yogis barely surviving on a calorie-restricted vegan diet? A long time ago that might have been the case, as traditionally, ashrams were meant to house those who chose to give up worldly pleasures, like excess food, sex, and shopping, in favor of attaining spiritual enlightenment.

But even then, a yoga ashram wasn’t just a place you’d go to renounce your favorite indulgences. While an ashram is certainly a retreat from life’s distractions, it is also a place to learn about your inner workings through self-contemplation and the study of spiritual scriptures.

In my own experience, life at an ashram is not easy. There are often chores, mandatory early morning meditations, and scant meals stripped of everything savory. As tough as it is to get up at 5:30 every morning, scrub toilets, and spend all day reading, meditating, and doing yoga, there is something incredibly divine in the experience.

If traveling afar to spend time at a yoga ashram is neither in your budget, nor works with your schedule, the following tips will help you create the feel of an ashram right in your own home.

Create a library of inspirational and spiritual books

A huge component of spending time at an ashram is self-inquiry and spiritual study. Gather books that inspire deep thought processes and tickle your interest in learning more about the mysteries of life. Designate space in your home to sit and read books of spiritual nature. Take time to simply contemplate your life’s purpose, without distraction.

Unplug the television, radio, and computer

Ashrams are typically built in remote locations, far from the influence of news, drama, and pending work agendas. The reason for this is to maintain a pure heart, void of the negativity we often cling to when we’re attached to the television or our computer.

If getting rid of your television, radio, and computer in your home is not an option, try unplugging them for just a few hours a day and notice if it makes you feel any more at ease with life.

Set up an altar

Ashrams are places of worship, and every place of worship has an altar. At the very least, an altar is a reminder of our vulnerability to a higher power, the force of creation, or simply a tribute to someone, or something we honor.

Your altar can be as small as a shoebox or as tall as a statue. Just make sure and set up your alter in a place free of clutter. Place items of special interest such as a photograph or a small token on or around your altar as a reminder to be humble in the presence of that which you adore.


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By Jill Lawson for

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9:12PM PDT on Mar 31, 2013

I wish I have more room... I have dreamed about it...

2:15AM PDT on Mar 30, 2013

Thanks interesting article

12:29AM PDT on Mar 30, 2013


3:35AM PDT on Mar 29, 2013

Thank you, I have created my little home retreat 4 years ago, and it has been a beautiful experience, no one gets to walk in to that "beautiful" room (my style beautiful we are all unique) when I need to escape, not just to do yoga, but when I feel like I'm floating on clouds that room has it all, I have build it up over the years. I need a home away from home at home. It may sound strange, however laying on my hammock listening to beautiful sounds, sipping fresh made lemonade after a rough day of's a simple beauty.

11:53PM PDT on Mar 28, 2013

Thank you!

4:33PM PDT on Mar 28, 2013


8:02AM PDT on Mar 28, 2013


9:40PM PDT on Mar 27, 2013

The reason they recommend energetically light foods is they don't weigh us down. They don't make us sleepy. Best time to meditate, I've found, is before eating the first meal, as is done in ashrams. Then we can eat light foods like fruits, fermented foods (kim chi is good), steamed vegetables, etc. There's no problem with spices, like Thai food seasonings, cayenne, good quality salt, ginger, etc.... Just avoiding stick to the ribs kinds of foods helps a lot. And drinking lots of pure water is crucial. Sounds wonderful, ok, you talked me into it. A ashram retreat at home. Good idea.

6:41PM PDT on Mar 27, 2013

I wish I had the space and the privacy for something like this. Sigh.

5:14PM PDT on Mar 27, 2013


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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

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